With so little light pollution, stargazing in Africa is about as good as it gets. Whether you're a budding astronomer or simply spellbound by the idea of spending a night under the stars, we can arrange the perfect experience for you. The Milky Way will never look so beautiful, and the sounds of the bush at night will never sound so thrilling...
Best for: Adventurers
Fly camping earned its name from the original walking safari pioneers who carried the lightweight flysheet from a tent to string up between trees each night. Nowadays, sleeping out in the African bush still isn't something we'd recommend for the fainthearted, but with the right guides to help set up and ensure your safety, it can also be one of the most thrilling and memorable safari experiences.
A latter day fly camping experience involves walking to a completely remote area, spotting wildlife en route. Come evening, while you sip on sundowner cocktails around a quickly conjured up campfire, your guides will prepare the modern camping equipment. Settle in for the night and listen to animal calls in the distance before waking to a memorable African dawn.
Photographed: Fly camping from Jongomero Camp, Ruaha National Park
If you are travelling in a country's cooler months (we'll let you know), make sure you pack a jumper to fend off the chill at night.
Best for: Romance
It doesn't get much more romantic than snuggling up with your other half in a four-poster bed, raised up on a treehouse platform in the middle of the African bush.
Many of our favourite lodges, including Kingsley Treehouse at Lion Sands pictured here, have now added luxury treehouses (complete with fully functioning bathrooms) to their portfolio and can offer one or more night sleepout experiences. Following on from the afternoon game drive you will arrive at your secluded treehouse as dusk falls to find a gourmet dinner and a chilled drink waiting for you. Your guide will then make themselves scarce and leave you to enjoy the night together, with lanterns, blankets and bubbly aplenty.
There's no need for a mobile phone during a sleepout because should you need anything you'll have a radio, or a guide sleeping relatively nearby, making this the perfect time for a digital detox.
Best for: Playing it safe
For some, the fear of bugs and things that go bump in the night is enough to put them off a night under the stars altogether. But if you're minded to give it a try, why not compromise by choosing a lodge that offers a star bed adjacent to your perfectly safe, hermetically sealed(ish) bedroom?
Several lodges offer different variations on the same theme here and you can opt for either an additional rooftop bed setup, a four-poster bed on wheels or even just a comfortable daybed next to your private plunge pool. Whichever you choose, you'll still get the full stargazing experience, but also the option to retreat inside whenever you like.
Photographed: Loisaba Star Beds, Laikipia, Kenya
... but if you do have your phone, download a stargazing app so you can identify and follow the constellations as they move across the sky.